We first met Lara as an 18 year old. She was remarkable then as she had found us somehow on Facebook and asked could she do some volunteering (pretty impressive reaching out for a typically reserved teenager). It was early days and we had no volunteer forms to fill in, so Karen just stuck her in the car and drove off to collect a load of food from a redistribution centre.

During that car journey we learnt that Lara’s life had been far from easy and she had recently been moved to live with a family in Torpoint following huge family trauma. Since then, we don’t consider ourselves as having done much. Lara has displayed remarkable initiative, resolve, determination and resilience and we have pretty much just stood back and cheered her on. However she asked could she write a bit about her experience and the following is entirely her own words. We are a bit blown away to be honest!

“When I first walked into the village hub I did not know what my purpose was in life. The village hub, Karen and Diane were like a massive Rainbow in my rainy storm. They taught me that I can achieve things and most importantly they made me feel part of a community where I was welcomed  and could expand on my interpersonal skills. The village hub is not just a hub, it’s a hub of opportunities. 

When I started to volunteer in the hub I realised that I liked helping people and I felt like I had a purpose as I was helping people. Because I felt I had a purpose I wanted to achieve amazing things and go into a career with helping people. With all my interpersonal skills learnt from the Village Hub it led me to getting a job with Plymouth City Council in social services.

I can not thank the people of the Village Hub and Karen and Diane enough. They made me feel welcomed, made me feel like I could achieve something and gave me hope what no one has before.”